HAMPSHIRE County Council has elected a new leader and new chairman at the Annual General Meeting of the County Council on Friday.

Cllr Keith Mans has been elected as the new county council leader and Cllr Charles Choudhary has been elected as chairman, the equivalent of ‘mayor’.

The county council met to formally establish the new administration where Cllr Mans officially took up his new role. It follows the announcement by former Leader, Cllr Roy Perry, that he was stepping down from the role after six years.

Cllr Keith Mans is the Hampshire county councillor for Brockenhurst in the New Forest and has served the county council as deputy leader since 2013. He was also the executive lead member for childrens’ services. Before being elected to Hampshire County Council, Cllr Mans was an MP for Wyre in Lancashire from 1987-1997.

Cllr Charles Choudhary was elected to the position of chairman, and outgoing chairman, Cllr Elaine Still was thanked at the meeting for her past year’s tenure. In his role as chairman, Cllr Choudhary is the civic head of the county. He will represent the county council on royal visits and ceremonial occasions in Hampshire as well as carry out other civic activities and duties. The chairman presides over county council meetings and ensures they are conducted in line with standing orders and that they are a forum for debating issues.

Cllr Choudhary was first elected to Hampshire County Council in 2013 to represent Andover North. At the meeting, Cllr Choudhary announced that his theme for his year as chairman will be mental health and wellbeing. Cllr Mel Kendal, county councillor for New Milton, was elected vice chairman.

The full Cabinet has been confirmed as follows:

Cllr Keith Mans, Leader and Executive Member for Policy and Resources;

Cllr Rob Humby, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Environment and Transport;

Cllr Stephen Reid, Executive Member for Economic Development, Human Resources and Performance;

Cllr Patricia Stallard, Executive Lead Member for Childrens’ Services;

Cllr Roz Chadd, Executive Member for Education and Skills;

Cllr Liz Fairhurst, Executive Member for Adult Social Care and Health;

Cllr Judith Grajewski, Executive Member for Public Health;

Cllr Andrew Joy, Executive Member for Communities, Partnerships and External Affairs including Brexit;

Cllr Edward Heron, Executive Member for Countryside and Rural Affairs;

Cllr Seȧn Woodward, Executive Member for Recreation and Heritage.